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THE CONFESSION AND EXECUTION Of the Five Priſoners that ſuffered at TYBURN On Wedneſday the 19th of Decemb. 1677. VIZ.

  • Margaret Riggs, alias Grover,
  • William Longman,
  • John Ruddocke,
  • Henry Payne, and
  • Elizabeth Hewet.

WITH An Account of their penitent Behaviour after their Condemnation, and ſubſtance of their laſt Speeches at the place of Execution.

Publiſhed for a Warning-piece to all others to avoid the lewd Courſes which brought them to this Ignominious End.

With Allowance.

London: Printed for D. M. 1677.

The laſt Speeches, Confeſsion, and Execution of the Priſoners, December 19. 1677.

DEath in its own nature is very af­frighting to Man, the King of Ter­rours, much more when he comes attended with ſhameful and ignominious Circumſtances; when Perſons conſider that they have haſtened his approach by the Er­rours of their lives, and are juſtly cut off for their Crimes. Oh! how ſad is it, when poor Souls are themſelves the occaſion of their being thruſt out of this world by un­timely Violence, and yet are not at all fitted or prepared for the next. If they look down to Earth, there is nothing but Juſtice and Vengeance ready to purſue them; and4 if they look up to Heaven, they cannot but conclude that too pure a place for ſuch un­clean Creatures to enter into, whom the Earth it ſelf would no longer entertain. Yet ſo lamentably do the Deluſions of Satan, and Witchcrafts of Sin blinde the eyes of theſe Malefactors, that they rarely reflect on theſe things till it be too late; nor will be warned by the frequent Examples of their wretched Fellow-Criminals, to leave off their wicked Courſes, till they are precipitated in­to the ſame Gulf of Miſery.

Of this, the Five Perſons that this day ſuffered were deplorable inſtances. After their Condemnation many charitable Di­vines went to viſit them, beſides the moſt diligent and careful endeavours of Mr. Or­dinary, who, well knowing the weight of his Office, takes care on all occaſions to diſcharge a good Conſcience therein, by u­ſing all means to make them ſenſible of their ſad Condition, and prepare them for their terrible Change.

The poor Souls appeared as ignorant and unacquainted with the Principles of Chri­ſtian5 Religion, except only ſome bare empty notional words, as Heathens. True it is, they profeſt themſelves Chriſtians, and that they hop'd to be ſaved by the Mercies of God; but the odious nature of Sin, the ne­ceſſity of a Saviour, the terms of a New Co­venant, the nature of Repentance, Faith, and other Evangelical Graces, they were wholly ſtrangers to: But by the pains of theſe Miniſters, God was pleaſed to give them a taſte of theſe precious and moſt im­portant Truths, though 'tis feared, by their careleſs inſenſible Carriage, ſome of them ſtill were more ſolicitous to get a Reprieve than to get Grace, and minded more to ſave their Lives for a few moments, than their Souls to eternity. So hard it is when Per­ſons have gone on all their lives, hardening their hearts in wickedneſs, to be mollified on a ſudden, though ſummon'd to Repentance by a preſent and unavoidable Death.

One of theſe perſons was heretofore Con­demned, and now juſtly brought to ſuffer.

Another about two years ſince was Con­victed and received Sentence of Death, but6 obtaining a Reprieve, after long lying in Newgate, obtain'd his Liberty by the Gene­ral Pardon; but was now brought in for ſtealing a parcel of Swords.

Another was by trade a Sawyer, and had lived neer Iſlington: he had formerly been burnt in the hand, and ſeveral times in Goal; and having lately follow'd the Foot-Pad, was Condemn'd for a Robbery on the Highway.

Mrs. Riggs was notoriouſly infamous; ſeveral of her Children had been executed, and ſhe a year or two ago tranſported for ſtealing Silks; but returning before her time, was now again Convicted of ſtea­ling, and call'd to her former Judgement. She caus'd her Coffin to be made & brought into the Priſon to her; and we wiſh that ſhe had provided for her Soul as well as for her Carcaſs.

The other woman was Convicted about a year and a half ſince, and upon the General Pardon gave Bail to tranſport her ſelf with­in ſuch a time; but never did it, but fell to her old wicked Courſes, in which being now taken, ſhe was Condemned.


There was another woman received Sen­tence to be Burnt; but ſhe alleadging her ſelf to be quick with Childe, which a Jury of Matrons likewiſe affirmed, that the Innocent Babe might not periſh with the Guilty Mo­ther, Execution for the preſent is ſuſpen­did.

The day before their Execution four Mi­niſters were to viſit them, and beſtowed much pious pains both in Exhortation and Prayer with them, preſſing them to Repent, and Confeſs their Sins, and give Glory to God. To whom one of them was ſo hardy ('tis ſaid) as to declare, That ſhe never in her life, that ſhe could remember, ever felt any Convictions or Checks of Conſcience for her wickedneſs, but now deſired a lon­ger ſpace, promiſing amendment, &c. But they deſired her not to flatter her ſelf with any ſuch hopes, but rather inſtantly to ſet upon the Work with all her might, and im­prove thoſe few minutes ſhe had allowed her, rather than vainly to expect longer time, and miſ-ſpend the preſent.


Mrs. Riggs Confeſt ſhe had been a notorious ſinner all her days, and that ſhe had been an oc­caſion of bringing many poor wretches to un­timely Ends, for which ſhe expreſt much ſor­row; but ſaid, for her own part ſhe did con­feſs ſhe deſerved to die, and had long look'd for it, and deſired the Miniſters to pray for her.

In the Cart they behaved themſelves very pe­nitently, weeping and wringing their hands, as likewiſe at the place of Execution; but ſaid little, ſave onely, Deſiring all people to take Example by them, and to remember this, That if they themſelves had took warning when o­thers of their Acquaintance, under the ſame Circumſtances, with their dying breath heartily adviſed them to it, they might have prevented this ſhameful untimely Death which now they were to ſuffer. And ſo after Prayers and reli­gious Offices uſual on ſuch occaſions, ſurrendred their Souls to the Mercies of God, and their Bo­dies to Execution.


About this transcription

TextThe Confession and execution of the five prisoners that suffered at Tyburn on Wednesday the 19th of Decemb. 1677 viz, Margaret Riggs, alias Grover, William Longman [double brace] John Ruddocke, Henry Payne, and Elizabeth Hewet : with an account of their penitent behaviour after their condemnation, and substance of their last speeches at the place of execution / published for a warning-piece to all others to avoid the lewd courses which brought them to their ignominious end.
Extent Approx. 7 KB of XML-encoded text transcribed from 5 1-bit group-IV TIFF page images.
SeriesEarly English books online text creation partnership.
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(EEBO-TCP ; phase 2, no. A80316)

Transcribed from: (Early English Books Online ; image set 152250)

Images scanned from microfilm: (Early English books, 1641-1700 ; 2287:13)

About the source text

Bibliographic informationThe Confession and execution of the five prisoners that suffered at Tyburn on Wednesday the 19th of Decemb. 1677 viz, Margaret Riggs, alias Grover, William Longman [double brace] John Ruddocke, Henry Payne, and Elizabeth Hewet : with an account of their penitent behaviour after their condemnation, and substance of their last speeches at the place of execution / published for a warning-piece to all others to avoid the lewd courses which brought them to their ignominious end. 8 p. Printed for D.M.,London :1677.. ("With Allowance") (Imperfect: print show-through.) (Reproduction of original in: Huntington Library.)
  • Executions and executioners -- England.
  • Thieves -- England.
  • Great Britain -- History -- Charles II, 1660-1685.

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ImprintAnn Arbor, MI ; Oxford (UK) : 2014-11 (EEBO-TCP Phase 2).
  • DLPS A80316
  • STC Wing C5747A
  • STC ESTC R205229
  • EEBO-CITATION 38875589
  • OCLC ocm 38875589
  • VID 152250

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